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Old 10-20-2010, 02:28 AM   #1
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Degenerative Disk Disease

Just got diagnosed. I am being refereed to an Ortho. This is not going to go well since my Dad thinks Ortho will only want to fuse me. I am not even sure what life will be like down the road. How soon I will have to move to higher end pain management. I do not even know if or how far my disks are herniated yet. I am upset, stressed, and nervous about the whole thing.

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Old 11-01-2010, 10:41 PM   #2
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I was just diagnosed with the same thing last week. Had a herniated disc in '99 and started having hip pain about a year ago.

My nurse (at my primary, you no longer see a Dr, you see a nurse) wants me to go to physical therapy.

Where are you having pain? Mine is mostly in my hip but moves down to my leg if I'm up and around awhile.
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Old 11-01-2010, 11:02 PM   #3
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My mom has the same thing. PT has helped a lot. If you are past the point of PT helping but aren't ready for surgery, a pain management clinic might be able to help with getting the pain to a tolerable level so you can put off surgery.
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Old 11-02-2010, 11:13 AM   #4
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Just another perspective--I have been dealing with this for many, many years. I was diagnosed with arthritis in 7th grade. They also found mild scoliosis and moderate lordosis (swayback.) I don't know when the arthritis began attacking my back, but it is a mess. Only the thoracic area is moderately stable. I have 4 vertabrae fused in my neck and won't have anything done to my lumbar (even though every single disc is "blown" to use my doctor's word) as I am 65 and have many other health problems, too.

You get used to the pain. You learn to work around any limitations. Most people don't even realize that I have anything "wrong." Learn to pace yourself and try to have a positive attitude. Check out flylady.net for a really great coping method. Some days I only do 2 minutes or 5 minutes at a time. You can deal with this. Worrying doesn't solve the problem--it only stresses you out. Take one day at a time.

I take Mobic and have a prescription for Ultram (which I very rarely take.) My previous doctor said he would put in a morphine pump if I wanted, but I don't. I personally don't want to be dependent on pain meds.
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Old 11-19-2010, 01:45 PM   #5
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What area are your discs an issue? I was diagnosed with this 2 years ago. I was 36. I did have a ruptured disc at c5-6 and one ready to rupture at c7-8. So I had an anterior cervical fusion at both levels with cadaver bone and hardware put in. Although, it was a rough 4 month recovery; you would never know that I had it done,now. I saw an amazing neurosurgeon in Philadelphia and am so glad I did. I was advised that if I did not go through with the surgery, I would most likely be paralyzed from the neck down.
I have no residual pain and only occasionally have muscular trouble in my middle back.

I wish you well with your chosen treatment. Weigh your options and get as much information as you can ahead of time.

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Old 11-19-2010, 01:47 PM   #6
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my other half and her dad have this, dad has 5 fused vertebra but uses a (sorry about spelling) tinge unit. at least thats how it sounds when he says it. have you tried one? electrical signals to reduce pain
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Old 11-20-2010, 09:53 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by asouthernbelle View Post
my other half and her dad have this, dad has 5 fused vertebra but uses a (sorry about spelling) tinge unit. at least thats how it sounds when he says it. have you tried one? electrical signals to reduce pain
It's a Tens unit. (http://arthritis.about.com/od/assist...g/tensunit.htm)
My mil has one for her back pain.
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Old 01-02-2011, 08:27 PM   #8
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I have herniated disc. Lots of pai at times. Started Yoga and made a huge difference. I recommend it to all with pain.
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Old 01-24-2011, 10:08 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by ORMom2Four View Post
Where are you having pain? Mine is mostly in my hip but moves down to my leg if I'm up and around awhile.
I'm pretty sure that is the sciatic nerve which is between lumbar 4 and 5. I have a cyst there and have been in HORRIBLE pain over it. Standing or walking puts more pressure on it.

Fortunately I am pain free now - but I'm not really sure how. I did 4 days of total bed rest which seemed to really help. I also went through 3 shots just in case it might help it from not coming back.
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